How The Right Became Trump-Worshipping Monsters Set On Rat-F*cking Liberals, America, and Truth Itself
- 216 Pages
- April 24, 2018
- ISBN: 9781510737457
- Imprint: Hot Books
- Trim Size: 6.000in x 9.000in
“Amanda Marcotte drains the swamp and reveals a Republican Party hijacked by grifters and frauds.” ―David Daley
The election of Donald Trump in 2016, like most of his campaign, came as a shock to many Americans. How could a man so lacking in capacity, so void of any intellectual heft, become the president of the United States? How did Trump, a man with no detectable personal qualities outside of resentment and the will to dominate, appeal to millions of Americans and win the highest office in the land? The American right has spent decades turning away from reasoned discourse toward a rhetoric of pure resentment—it’s this shift that laid the groundwork for Trump’s ascendency.
In Troll Nation, journalist Amanda Marcotte outlines how Trump was the inevitable result of American conservatism’s degradation into an ideology of blind resentment. For years now, the purpose of right wing media, particularly Fox News, has not been to argue for traditional conservative ideals, such as small government or even family values, so much as to stoke bitterness and paranoia in its audience. Traditionalist white people have lost control over the culture, and they know it, and the only option they feel they have left is to rage at a broad swath of supposed enemies ― journalists, activists, feminists, city dwellers, college professors ― that they blame for stealing “their” country from them.
Conservative pundits, politicians, and activists have abandoned any hope of winning the argument through reasoned discourse, and instead have adopted a series of bad faith claims, conspiracy theories, and culture war hysterics. Decades of these antics created a conservative voting base that was ready to elect a mindless bully like Donald Trump.
David Talbot is the New York Times bestselling author of Brothers: The Hidden History of the Kennedy Years and The Devil’s Chessboard. He is the founder and former editor-in-chief of Salon and has written for the New Yorker, Rolling Stone, and Time. He lives in San Francisco.
—David Neiwert, author of Alt-America: The Rise of the Radical Right in the Age of Trump
“Donald Trump is, among many awful things, the prototypical Internet troll: a master of using social media to hype his business exploits and slag his enemies – most notably President Obama, the black president Trump insisted was born in Kenya. In 2016, Marcotte shows us, he enlisted an army of sad-sack white male keyboard warriors, from the battlefields of the men’s rights movement, Gamergate, the bowels of Reddit and white nationalist message boards, to conquer the White House, where he is now the Troll-in-Chief, the undisputed head of Troll Nation. Where traditional conservatism sought to best its enemies with ideas and policies, Troll Nation bullies, demeans and subjugates the other side. And where the traditional right couched its anti-feminist policies as designed to protect women, troll conservatism strips off that veneer: Uppity women are ruining the country, they believe, and they must be used, abused, mocked, subordinated; the pussy-grabbing president got that right. Troll Nation also reminds readers that the angry mob is just a very noisy minority. The trolled majority has truth, reason and numbers on its side – but it needs to wake up and fight for a democracy that’s been degraded by this assault on the very notion of truth itself.”
—Joan Walsh, national correspondent at The Nation and CNN
“Trumpism is not an anomaly caused by one man. It's the continuation of decades-long right-wing efforts to exploit racial and cultural resentments. Amanda Marcottee knows this, and in Troll Nation, she deftly and sharply explores the dark and troubling currents that have led to the current crisis. Her book is a disturbing but valuable guide to what's happening in American politics.”
—David Corn, Washington bureau chief, Mother Jones
“Ever feel like you’ve been cheated? Amanda Marcotte drains the swamp and reveals a Republican Party hijacked by grifters and frauds. Honest conservatives who want their party back must read this -- as should anyone outraged over how easy it has been for right-wing con artists to hijack our democracy.”
—David Daley, author of Ratf**ked: Why Your Vote Doesn't Count